All Saints’ College reaches for equality on Close the Gap Day
The All Saints’ College (ASC) community recognised National Close the Gap Day to highlight the inequality of healthcare between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians on Thursday, 16 March.
Organised by Oxfam Australia, Close the Gap Day aims to bring people together, to share information and to take meaningful action in support of achieving Indigenous health equality by 2030.
ASC Acting Head of Service Learning, Mrs Natasha Saunders said the College chose to participate in this event to educate its community about the state of Australia’s health system.
“Close the Gap Day is so important as it provides our students with an opportunity to show that they do care about the state of our country and that they feel strongly about the fact that changes need to be made,” she said. “It gives them a voice for our Nation’s leaders to hear.”
On Close the Gap Day, more than 400 students and staff wrote messages on black, red and yellow paper hands which were displayed together in the centre of the campus with a banner that read ‘What does Close the Gap mean to you’.
Throughout the week, ASC community members were also encouraged to visit the Oxfam website to sign the Close the Gap pledge to ensure that the Australian Government continues to work with Indigenous communities, recommit additional funding and invest in real partnerships.
The College has an ongoing partnership with Teach, Learn, Grow (TLG), an organisation which aims to improve educational outcomes and aspirations of rural and Indigenous students in socio-economic disadvantaged areas.
A group of ASC Year 11 and 12 students participate in a program with TLG each year, travelling to Bayulu Community School in a remote area of the Kimberley to provide one-to-one tutoring and mentoring to Indigenous children.
A participant from last year’s TLG program presented a powerful speech at a College Assembly on Close the Gap Day, describing his firsthand experience of the education and health gaps between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians.